OR2014 Repository Rant accepted (and a call to the community)

This year, Open Repositories 2014 is trying something new with a series of short 24/7 repository rants, to be delivered on Wednesday, 11th of June and one those rants will be mine, entitled:

“The Invisible Institutional Repository: Missing a Trick (and Missing Fulltext)?”

The title (and the rant) seemed like a good idea at the time and I have been both pro (and anti) the “invisible repository” but the challenge is to do the pitch justice in a mere seven minutes:

This repository rant focuses on the challenge of making the institutional repository a valuable (and visible) service for academic colleagues – and ensuring it fulfills its full potential. It considers repository branding, “look and feel”, the need to add value and the challenge of ongoing repository engagement. It then looks to services like Mendeley and ResearchGate to ask if we are missing a trick (and lessons we could learn) from them. It will not provide specific solutions but rather is intended as a think piece in the spirit of this track which will “challenge the conventional wisdom or practice, and highlight what the repository community is doing that is misguided, or perhaps just missing altogether.

More explicitly the presentation is intended to:

  • challenge the value and use of the word repository [at least for end users – what is a repository anyway and really, do our academic colleagues care what it is called?]
  • explore if being invisible matters, are there advantages to being invisible?
  • ..or, if you can be seen, how does your repository present itself – like Amazon, like a Library Catalogue, something altogether institutional, or indeed like a repository
  • ask how we can close the gap between fulltext and just a metadata stub (if we collect both)
  • consider if an institutional repository is just another bit of central IT like the HR system or does it have unique/engaging properties which we should take advantage
  • consider how best we can help our academics feel ‘ownership’ of their material in the repository
  • support the shifting Open Access landscape [and its attendant issues]
  • ask how we can deliver more value [from ‘ego’ e-mail updates about downloads, deposits, tweets, views etc to new services]

My clarion cry to the community

As if that wasn’t enough (while also looking at services like Mendeley and ResearchGate), in my brief time of 24 slides and 7 minutes, I would like to include anecdotes (attributable or not) beyond the University of Glasgow which can support and fuel this proposed rant. My call to the community is to ask for your tales and your experiences. Do any of those questions resonate? Is it enough that we have ‘repositories’ usually in the ‘look and feel’ of our default software so we can readily identify a DSpace one, or an EPrints one, or a.n.other one?

I would be really interested to receive any comments or thoughts from colleagues on the challenges in ensuring that our repositories don’t just languish empty but really do realise their potential and make a difference in scholarly communication and the toll-free dissemination of research.

Enlighten’s One Millionth Download aka Brewster’s Million

Enlighten, the University’s publications database and open access repository, has recorded its one millionth download of Glasgow research.

Presentation to Stephen Brewster


The one millionth download was a 2004 conference paper by Professor Stephen Brewster entitled “Tactons: structured tactile messages for non-visual information display“. There have been over 12,300 downloads of Professor Brewster’s papers in Enlighten since January 2009.

Susan Ashworth, Deputy Director of Library Services, was delighted to present Professor Brewster with a bottle of champagne and said: “Downloads and access to Enlighten continue to go from strength, demonstrating the importance of making the University’s research freely available”.

A download statistics dashboard has been added to Enlighten which enables staff to see the overall downloads as well as their own download totals or those of their school or College. A similar dashboard has been added to the Glasgow Theses service and there are now over 60,000 theses downloads per month.

Statistics dashboards (and IRStats2)

For those who are interested, our download dashboards use an EPrints add-on called IRStats2 [Institutional Repository Statistics 2 – the successor to… IRStats].

Enlighten celebrates Open Access Week!

22-28 October is worldwide Open Access week. Enlighten, the University’s of Glasgow’s service for managing research publications, is also our Open Access repository offering unrestricted worldwide access to the full text of an increasing number of our publications. To find out more about Open Access, or to ask questions about using Enlighten, University staff are invited to come along this week to our stand in the University Library. Members of the Enlighten team will be there in the Am Fosglan area (just as you enter the Library) on Wednesday 24th October 14.00-16.00 and Thursday 25th October 10.00-12.00. Come along and talk to us and receive a voucher for a free hot drink from Hospitality Services! For more information about Enlighten or the event e-mail deposit@lib.gla.ac.uk.

Enlighten enters the Twittersphere – some social media musings

While lots of the users of Enlighten find us via search engines or direct links, a growing amount of traffic is coming via social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Interestingly the publications that are most often referred to by these sites are often not the same as those that feature in our local list of most downloaded papers from Enlighten.

Looking at the data for the past year the following papers have had significant numbers of referrals from Facebook:

van Dommelen, P., Gómez Bellard, C., and Pérez Jordà, G. (2010) Produzione agraria nella Sardegna punica fra cereali e vino. In: Milanese, M., Ruggeri, P., Vismara, C. and Zucca, R. (eds.) L’Africa Romana. I Luoghi e le Forme dei Mestieri e della Produzione nelle Province Africane (Atti del XVIII Convegno di Studio, Olbia, 11-14 Dicembre 2008). Series: L’Africa Romana (18). Carocci, Rome, Italy, pp. 1187-1202. ISBN 9788843054916. http://eprints.gla.ac.uk/48143/

Cockshott, W.P., and Zachriah, D. (2012) Arguments for Socialism. Amazon. ISBN B006S2LW6U. http://eprints.gla.ac.uk/58987/

The following papers have been popular referrals from Twitter:

Munro, K., Stevenson, K., Stenson, R., Walker, W., and Fisher, C. (2011) Planning for the mobile library: a strategy for managing innovation and transformation at the University of Glasgow Library. Serials, 24 (Sup. 3). S26-S31. ISSN 0953-0460 (doi:10.1629/24S26). http://eprints.gla.ac.uk/57643/

Hodge, R., Hoey, T., and Sklar, L. (2011) Bedload transport in bedrock rivers: the role of sediment cover in grain entrainment, translation and deposition. Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface, 116 . ISSN 0148–0227 (doi:10.1029/2011JF002032). http://eprints.gla.ac.uk/56453/

Users of sites such as StumbleUpon and LinkedIn are are also referring to papers in Enlighten.

Further evidence that deposit in Enlighten is a fantastic way of exposing research to as wide an audience as possible!



Big surge of interest in Glasgow report on disability

A look at our download statistics for August 2012 shows a huge surge of interest in a report published last year by the Glasgow Media Unit and the Strathclyde Centre for Disability Research:

Briant, E., Watson, N. , and Philo, G. (2011) Bad News for Disabled People: How the Newspapers are Reporting Disability. Project Report. Strathclyde Centre for Disability Research and Glasgow Media Unit, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK.

The report was downloaded 150 times during August with over 50 downloads on 24th August alone.

It is always interesting to try and find out why a paper has suddenly become popular. In this instance the increased interest is due to the ongoing London 2012 Paralympics and associated news coverage of disability issues.

An article by Polly Toynbee in the Guardian newspaper on 23rd August linked directly to the report.

The report is also mentioned within the comments on an article in the Guardian newspaper on 30th August:


The free accessibility of papers in Enlighten means that reports such as this one are readily available to the public – helping to raise awareness of important issues such as disability.

You can access the report at http://eprints.gla.ac.uk/57499/

Enlighten reaches 50,000 records!

The Enlighten team is delighted to announce a significant milestone for the service – on Friday 29th June we reached the fantastic total of 50,000 records for University of Glasgow publications. The 50,000th publication to be added to Enlighten was:

Robb, P.D., Finnie, M., and Craven, A.J. (2012) Characterisation of InAs/GaAs short period superlattices using column ratio mapping in aberration-corrected scanning transmission electron microscopy. Micron, 43 (10). pp. 1068-1072. ISSN 0968-4328 (doi:10.1016/j.micron.2012.04.018) [http://eprints.gla.ac.uk/66656/]

Full text of the article is available from Enlighten.

So far in 2012 the Enlighten team has added 5,500 records to the service – this compares with 7,346 added during the whole of 2011. In fact, over 500 records have been added just in the last week.

This milestone would not have been reached without the hard work and dedication of the Enlighten team – congratulations to everyone involved! The team is now working towards our next milestone – 100,000 records and even more full tex!

Download statistics for May 2012

Interest in full text papers in Enlighten continues to grow – in May we fell just short of 20,000 downloads of our papers (19,620 was the total for the month). Given there are just over 4,215 papers available in Enlighten this is an encouraging figure. Enlighten is fast approaching records for 50,000 publications – this will be the next milestone for the service.

The highest climbers for May are listed blow – with the exception of two papers these are all different from the highest climbers during April.

Smith, A.J., Cameron, S.O., Bagg, J., and Kennedy, D. (2001) Management of needlestick injuries in general dental practice. British Dental Journal, 190 (12). pp. 645-650.

Briggs, J. (2005) The use of indigenous knowledge in development: problems and challenges. Progress in Development Studies, 5 (2). pp. 99-114.

Smith, A.J., McHugh, S., Aitken, I., and Hood, J. (2002) Evaluation of the efficacy of Alpron disinfectant for dental unit water lines. British Dental Journal, 193 (10). pp. 593-596.

Fearnley, S., Beattie, V. , and Brandt, R. (2005) Auditor independence and audit risk: a reconceptualisation. Journal of International Accounting Research, 4 (1). pp. 39-71.

Beattie, V., and Jones, M.J. (1992) The use and abuse of graphs in annual reports: a theoretical framework and an empirical study. Accounting and Business Research, 22 (88). pp. 291-303.

Beattie, V., and Jones, M.J. (2004) Measurement distortion of graphs in corporate reports: an experimental study. Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal, 15 (4). pp. 546-564.

Cools, M., Emmanuel, C., and Jorissen, A. (2008) Management control in the transfer pricing tax compliant multinational enterprise. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 33 (6). pp. 603-628.

Lowe, G., Rumley, A., Norrie, J., Ford, I., Shepherd, J., Cobbe, S., Macfarlane, P., and Packard, C. (2000) Blood rheology, cardiovascular risk factors, and cardiovascular disease: The West of Scotland Coronary Prevention Study. Thrombosis and Haemostasis, 84 (4). pp. 553-558.

Konstas, I., Stathopoulos, V., and Jose, J.M. (2009) On social networks and collaborative recommendation. In: The 32nd Annual ACM SIGIR Conference, 19-23 July 2009, Boston, Massachusetts.

Pellegrini Masini, G. (2007) The carbon-saving behaviour of residential households. In: Futures of Cities – 51st IFHP World Congress, 23-26 September 2007, Copenhagen.